A Conversation with Karen: Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Well, today had its bad moments for sure (I've been a little weepy at various points over nothing particularly important) but it is finishing up on a high note. I'm feeling like my old, glass-half-full self -- even if a few sips of that glass still occassionally go down the wrong pipe. Here's the rundown from today:
  • Had accupuncture this morning, which always makes me feel better.
  • Managed to get my drycleaner to maneuver the belt on my khaki dress back into the slit. Yay!
  • Worked with Kristin to ensure I will receive a new Netflix shipment within a few days. More Big Love and Damages almost make the next incision worthwhile...
  • Called UnitedHealthcare to follow-up on my wig claim and found out that it had been denied (what did I tell you?!?) but in the same breath the operator said, "I don't why it would have been since it's clearly part of your benefit package." I had to be transferred to a dispute analyst who put me on hold for about 10 minutes. When he returned, he sounded chipper and said that it had been resolved and a summary of my benefits would arrive in the mail within the next 10 days. At which point I said, "Great but exactly what are the benefits? How much am I getting back?" And he said, "Oh. Let me look. Hold on for a second." Huh? Didn't you just resolve this dispute, buddy? Anyway, when he came back he told me (with a sound of pride in his voice) that I'd get a check for $910 within the month. Amen! You can run, UnitedHealthcare...but you CANNOT hide. What do you think would have happened if I hadn't called to follow-up? NOTHING. NO CHECK. Thank God for that tenacity I inherited, otherwise I'd be $910 poorer.
  • I decided to see if CVS had both the Miralax and Gatorade necessary for tomorrow's bowel prep since I already had to pick up some prescriptions there (...and since I try to avoid Alexandria's own un-Safeway like the plague) and sure enough, it did. Fortunately, I was finally able to put all of my Extra Bucks to good use and only had to pay about $3 for my bowel prep ingredients. I love it when things work out like that!
  • In addition to checking off many items on the to-do list, there was another thing I finally did, which made me feel much less anxious about life after the big H: While enjoying another beautiful afternoon at my parent's pool (but still totally depressed and angry about my looming hysterectomy), I finally called Karen, a friend and colleague of my good friend Kindra's in Richmond, to discuss her total hysterectomy. Karen is in early fifties and was diagnosed and treated for ovarian and uterine cancer (probably the rare synchronous primaries kind that I might have) about two and a half years ago. Like me, she had a total hysterectomy and six rounds of chemo to become cancer-free. Karen and I discussed a wide range of topics ranging from chemo side effects to the side effects of surgical menopause caused by a TOTAL hysterectomy (you see, a total hysterectomy is very different than your garden variety hysterectomy that non-cancer patients have) to the various ways in which I can eventually become a mom. While she admitted a couple of minor changes, our conversation did more to put to put me at ease about my future, uh, romantic life post-H than any other I've had to date. So, thank you Karen, you were so nice to give up part of your afternoon for me and your generosity will help this 32-year old sleep much sounder tonight. I guess all Karens are sweethearts, huh?
  • I had a lovely alfresco "last supper" with Alison at Tallula, which was delicious. I started with soft shell crab tempura followed by red snapper...followed by a decadent chocolate toffee cake with pistachio ice cream (I did split that with Alison...although I ate some of her half, too.)

So, that's it. I'll start the day tomorrow with a walk and full breakfast (my final meal for the next 36 hours) with my most faithful supporter, my mom, and then it's car inspection and house cleaning before I start...you guessed it...bowel prep around 3 p.m. This bowel prep will hopefully be my last for a long, long time (like, we're talking years!).

1 comment:

  1. So glad you spoke with Karen and it made you feel better. You are going to do amazingly...if anyone can it is certainly you! So sorry about our phone tag but I know you are in bowel prep so I will not bug again today. Thinking of you and will check on you soon.

    xoxo Elena